How is it possible to improve employee relations in health care through communication?

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thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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Health care is one of the areas in which there are more openings than qualified practitioners in many fields. As many health care organizations are trying to contain costs, they need to develop employee retention methods that focus on improved working conditions rather than simply increasing wages. Communication is also a major aspect of improving employee satisfaction and of improving health care quality.

Two areas of communication are important in health care organizations, vertical and lateral. Vertical communication involves having supervisors and employees communicate along lines of authority and responsibility. Having management aware of the concerns of employees and able to keep employees in the picture as long term strategies change are particularly important for efficient functioning and employee satisfaction. The more that employees feel that their concerns are being taken seriously by management, the happier they will be in their positions.

Lateral communication is often crucial for patient care. Often a single patient has multiple doctors and nurses, sometimes from different departments. The more departments can work together efficiently, and the more doctors, nurses, and other staff communicate well, the better the overall quality of care and the less likely that crucial information with be lost. Lack of communication among departments can be frustrating for employees. 

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